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Hopelink 

Description

Hopelink provides stability for the most vulnerable while ensuring those in crisis have the skills and support they need to get back on their feet and exit poverty for good. We serve about 60,000 low-income people every year.

From programs providing for basic needs, such as food and shelter, to others aimed at helping people find employment and maintain stable housing, Hopelink is working to remove barriers to economic stability.

Services are provided in five emergency service centers in Bellevue, Sno-Valley, Kirkland, Redmond, and Shoreline, as well as other locations throughout our 800-square-mile service area. 

Mission Statement
Hopelink’s mission is to promote self-sufficiency for all members of our community and to help people make lasting change in their lives.
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Hopelink
Bldg B Ste 275 
Redmond 
WA
98052 
(425) 869-6000 

Lauren Thomas 
CEO 

Programs

Hopelink Programs

Emergency Services
Hopelink's five centers in Bellevue, Kirkland, Redmond, Shoreline and Sno-Valley serve as community resources – providing food, help with heating bills, eviction prevention and emergency financial assistance, community information and referrals for families and individuals in need of other essential support.

Housing
Hopelink housing is coordinated through the King County Family Housing Connection. This comprehensive entry and assessment system provides a single access point to housing and other services for homeless families. Hopelink serves about 200 families every year through our housing program, which provides more than just a temporary place to live. By helping families set and achieve goals, our housing and family development case managers play a key role in the journey from crisis to stability.  

Asset Building
Hopelink’s asset building program is geared toward helping people find jobs, increase their income or take other steps toward long-term economic stability. Every Hopelink client in any of our 35 programs and services has access to classes and support aimed at obtaining employment, GED test prep, workforce literacy, English for Work, and financial literacy/management. Helping clients develop and implement solid plans for their future is fundamental to the program and a key to its success.

Recent Successes and Current Challenges

For calendar year 2014, Hopelink programs achieved the following results:

13,949 people
received fresh produce, canned goods, dairy and other foods through a Hopelink food bank – totaling more than 3.3 million pounds. 

1,501,906
rides were provided to 43,467 people through Hopelink’s transportation brokerage services; getting people to and from their medical appointments in King and Snohomish Counties. 

11,190 people were served through Hopelink's energy program. This program kept the heat on for families and seniors throughout the winter months.

187 Hopelink families were able to secure housing.  

358 students enrolled in Hopelink adult education programs, with many gaining skills to manage their finances or completing English for Work classes.

323 people were served by Hopelink’s employment program.


Continuing Challenges 
Challenges faced by those we help include stagnating wages, reductions in federal benefits to those at the very bottom of the income ladder and increasing housing costs. Local and federal data point to an increasingly steep climb out of poverty, especially for people with multiple barriers to employment and stability. Recent research by Robert A. Moffitt, the Krieger-Eisenhower professor of economics at Johns Hopkins University, found that while the US provides more benefits than it did 40 years ago, these benefits are not accessible to the poorest people in the country -- including single parents and the unemployed. Coupled with this decrease in benefits are three disturbing trends in the labor market: wages for the lowest-skill jobs are decreasing, overall wages are stagnating, and the labor market is shrinking, with an increasing number of people opting out of even looking for work.

Developing the tools to exit poverty for good requires stability, long-term support and the opportunity to address multiple challenges simultaneously. The people we help -- families and individuals who are part of the fabric of our communities in east and north King County -- benefit from all of the services we provide, and often use the stability garnered from those services to create sustainable changes in their lives. Every day, Hopelink clients are finding new or better jobs, accessing higher education or training, gaining financial management skills, improving their language ability or simply receiving support while they weather unexpected crises. However, Hopelink can only provide these services with sufficient funding. Community support is absolutely essential to our success.

Evaluation


Hopelink operates five Service Centers in Bellevue, Kirkland, Redmond, Shoreline, and Sno-Valley. Their programs serve an estimated 50,000 clients and include long-term transitional housing, short-term emergency shelter, food banks, child care, financial assistance, adult literacy education, employment, case management, and transportation.

Leadership
The Kresge Foundation awarded Hopelink a grant to hire a Chief Strategy Officer for three years.  Hopelink was one of nine organizations nationally to receive this award, and has utilized the position to facilitate their current strategic planning process which will guide the organization through 2020.  The Board is invested in a culture of continuous improvement and is committed to being a learning organization. 

Partnerships and Collaboration
Hopelink is an active leader in the Washington State Community Action Partnership (WSCAP), whose 30 member agencies serve the entire state. Hopelink’s CEO is the incoming President of the Board of WSCAP, she and other Hopelink executives are simultaneously acting to coordinate efforts to improve the effectiveness and efficiency of client based programs with the goal of ending poverty state wide. Hopelink executives meet regularly with their counterparts at the Multi-Service Center of South King County to share best practices and coordinate both services and funding opportunities.

Use of Best Practices
Hopelink continuously strives to improve their ability to measure success in helping clients break the cycle of poverty and move toward greater levels of self-sufficiency, as well as to measure the impact of that success on the communities they serve. Hopelink is leading a national effort, funded by the Alliance for Children and Families, to determine a unified definition of self-sufficiency that standardizes the measurement of incremental improvements clients achieve across all life domains. The outcome of this effort will be more effective work and superior results for clients across a broader service area.

Grant History with The Seattle Foundation:

Grants Awarded through The Seattle Foundation Grantmaking Program:

DateAmountPurpose
3/10/2013 $20,000.00provide general operating support.
3/10/2012 $25,000.00support general operating expenses.
3/10/2011 $20,000.00support general operating expenses.
6/10/2009 $100,000.00support the Link to Opportunities program.
3/10/2009 $50,000.00support general operating expenses.
12/10/2007 $120,000.00support the Career Opportunity Demonstration Program.
12/14/2006 $60,000.00support the Duvall Community Service Center and Family Housing capital project and general operating expenses.

Financials

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